BC First Nations, the Province of BC and the Government of Canada have all determined that the health disparities between First Nations and other residents in BC are no longer acceptable
In November 2005, the Province of British Columbia, the First Nations Leadership Council, and the Government of Canada signed a historic agreement entitles the Transformative Change Accord. The Accord recognizes the need to strengthen relationships on a government-to-government basis, and affirms the parties’ commitment to achieve three goals:
- Close the gaps between First Nations and other British Columbians in the areas of education, health, housing and economic opportunities over the next 10 years;
- Reconcile Aboriginal rights and title with those of the Crown, and;
- Establish a new relationship based on mutual respect and recognition.
The accord acknowledges and respects established and evolving jurisdictional and fiduciary relationships and responsibilities. Through the Accord the parties agreed to establish a 10-year plan to bridge the differences in social-economic standards.
This political unity created the opportunity for a new relationship with federal and provincial governments, including the area of health. Since 2005, a series of historic health plans and agreements have been established:
Transformative Change Accord (November 25, 2005)
On November 25, 2005, the First Nations Leadership Council (FNLC), Province of British Columbia (BC) and Government of Canada (Canada) signed the Transformative Change Accord, committing the parties to: establishing a new relationship based on mutual respect and recognition; reconciling Aboriginal title and rights with those of the Crown; and closing the social and economic gap between First Nations and other British Columbians, in the areas of relationships, education, health, housing and infrastructure, and economic opportunities. The Transformative Change Accord calls upon the Parties to negotiate a 10-year implementation strategy.
The Transformative Change Accord: First Nations Health Plan (November 27, 2006)
The Transformative Change Accord: First Nations Health Plan was released on November 27, 2006 by the FNLC and BC. This ten-year Plan includes twenty-nine action items in the following four areas: Governance, Relationships and Accountability; Health Promotion/Disease and Injury Prevention; Health Services; and Performance Tracking.
Tripartite First Nations Health Plan Memorandum of Understanding (November 27, 2006)
Although Canada was not part of the Transformative Change Accord: First Nations Health Plan, it was interested in negotiating a tripartite plan and demonstrating support for the efforts between First Nations and BC. To this end, a First Nations Health Plan Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by the FNLC, Canada and BC on November 27,2006. This MoU includes the same sections and action items as the Transformative Change Accord: First Nations Health Plan, proposes a number of new action items, and required the Parties to develop a Tripartite Health Plan by May 27, 2007
Tripartite First Nations Health Plan (June 11, 2007)
A new ten-year Tripartite First Nations Health Plan was signed by the FNLC, Canada, and BC on June 11, 2007. This plan builds on the Transformative Change: First Nations Health Plan and includes an agreement by the parties to create and implement a new structure for the governance of First Nations health services in BC.
Tripartite Basis for a Framework Agreement on Health Governance (July 26, 2010)
On Date, the signing of the basis agreement set out the commitment and descriptions of the elements, mutual undertakings and processes that will form the foundation for the negotiations of a British Columbia Tripartite First Nations Framework Agreement on Health Governance (the “Framework Agreement”) between the Federal Government and the Province and the First Nations of British Columbia.
Tripartite Framework Agreement on First Nation Health Governance (October 13, 2011)
On October 13th, 2011, the signing of the landmark legal agreement that ensured BC First Nations have a major role in the planning and management of health services for First Nations through a new First Nations health governance structure. The British Columbia Tripartite Framework Agreement on First Nation Health Governance paves the way for the federal government to transfer the planning, design, management and delivery of First Nations health programs to a new First Nations Health Authority over the next two years. The signing of the B.C. Tripartite Framework Agreement on First Nation Health Governance is a key milestone in the Tripartite First Nations Health Plan, which was signed in 2007.
Health Partnership Accord (December 17, 2012)
These agreements establish a tripartite commitment to improve the health and well-being of all First Nations in BC through increased First Nations decision-making, enabled by a new First Nations health governance structure and a new health partnership with federal and provincial governments.
Canada Funding Agreement and Sub-Agreements to the Tripartite Framework Agreement on First Nations Health Governance (2013)
After October 1, 2013, the federal transfer of resources and responsibilities to the First Nations Health Authority (FNHA) will be complete. This is a milestone in the ongoing evolution of the health partnership between First Nations and federal and provincial governments in BC. Health Canada will no longer be responsible for the design, management of delivery of federally-funded health programs or services for First Nations in BC; these roles will be assumed by the FNHA. Overtime, the FNHA will redesign the current First Nations and Inuit Health FNIHB programs, informed by engagement with BC First Nations.
FNHC-FNHA-FNHDA Relationship Agreement
Photo: back row: Warner Adam, (Deputy Chair, FNHC), Jeanine Lynxleg (Vice-President, FNHDA), Joe Gallagher (CEO, FNHA). Front Row: Grand Chief Doug Kelly (Chair, FNHC), Jackie McPherson (President, FNHDA), Pierre Leduc (Vice-Chair, FNHA).
On November 6, 2013, the FNHC, FNHA and FNHDA held a signing ceremony for the FNHC-FNHA-FNHDA Relationship Agreement. The Relationship Agreement builds upon the direction provided by BC First Nations about the mandates Health Governing component and sets our processes to ensure that the FNHC, FNHA, and FNHDA have regular communications and provide mutual respect to one another.